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Old December 31, 2004, 10:27 AM   #26
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If I did not feel threatened, as in if he kept a social distance, I would ask why he needed the money. Heck, he could be a hard working Joe who ran out of gas and had no money, or in his frustration left his wallet in his truck 5 miles back, and just needed to get home. I try not to judge by looks alone. A lot of working stiffs at the end of the day asking for cash would look like they lived under a bridge.

If he did not answer my question appropriately, then the situation changes. I would reenter the store, and call to have him picked up. Trust me, the store owner does not want him there. Then I would get to my car and leave as he was harrassing another patron.

I live in small town America, not LA. I tip waitresses, give money to those in need, but I do not encourage people to harrass others by rewarding their behavior.
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Old December 31, 2004, 02:10 PM   #27
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LOL I ussualy reward honesty as well.
I reward honesty, too. But the one time I gave significant ($20) to a panhandler, it was for a really good lie.

Husband and I were walking in downtown San Jose, near the courthouse, at lunchtime. Lots of people around doing whatever businesspeople do at lunchtime.

Panhandler was standing next to a Porche that had the meter expired, looked my husband in the eye, and said, "Oh man! My meter just expired, and look, the meter maid's coming! My car's going to get towed away ..."

The meter maid was, in fact, working her way up the street. But the guy was an obvious denizen of the streets, with hygiene to match. He was laughing, too, because he knew it was ludicrous.

I thought about it, handed him a quarter.

He said, "thanks!" and then he fed the parking meter.

Husband and I looked at each other, and without a word, Bob pulled out his wallet and I pulled a $20 out to hand the guy.

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Old December 31, 2004, 05:20 PM   #28
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That's priceless pax!
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Old December 31, 2004, 08:11 PM   #29
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Isn't all of that a little agressive? It happens to me daily and depending on the look of the guy, I'll either give it to him if I have it, or respond politely "I'm really sorry man, I don't have it on me" Even if it's a bum, who'sto know he ain't a vet?

Now, if he continues to follow, I'd turn around and tell him firlmly, "I told you I don't have anything. Please stop following me." Since I live in california, and I can't carry my Ruger P90, I usually have an 8 inch Buck on me. That's usually pretty persuasive. Multi tool and car keyes and cell? Take out the cell, pretend to dial 911 "Yes, Sheriff? I have a man here..." If he's a vagrant, he'll be gone by the time you say "Sheriff." If he continues to persue, yell for help, something like "I told you NO, now back the f*** off!" In a loud voice usually attracts attention, without sounding like a pansy. Then, at least he has eyes on him, and you can defend yourself if need be.
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Old December 31, 2004, 11:23 PM   #30
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Assault on begger

BG reaches your car but does not follow you--rather he stands at the driver's side door and holds. He is showing no aggression, but it IS public so you can't just hit the guy. You are unarmed except for a multi-tool, cell phone and pen (you are stuck in California).
Whether or not you can punch the guy is not relevant to the fact that you are in a public place, unless of course you needed a more secluded location so that there will be no witnesses around to see you commit a crime by assaulting the begger.

I am really surprised by those of you who said you would assault the begger.
So I kick him in the nuts and run away screaming like a little girrl....
A little can of pepper spray is great dog and bum repellant. Hose him down if he gets too close after being politely asked to beat it.
Of course, there is also the brandishing aspect. If the guy is not threatening you, displaying your gun to him isn't going to be a legal action.
I would pull my coat aside and show him I was carring a gun
I am also surprised that one remedy would be to call 911, give a false statement stating that the guy is threatening you and the false statement that he is precluding you from getting in your car. As noted in the scenario, the guy was not threatening you. He was just being persistent in his begging.

So if you can't enter the car safely, go back into the store and call 911. Tell 'em you've got a panhandler threatening you and preventing you from getting into your vehicle.
So what is the emergency that necessitates calling 911 from inside the store where the begger is no longer pursuing you? Even if you felt you are in danger while out by your car, at the time of the call, you are not in danger - being safe in the store.
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Old January 4, 2005, 04:26 PM   #31
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Just hold your ground, and my preference is that if im carrying a gun, im carrying a less lethal option too........extendable baton (legal in FL). If you know what your doing with one of them, they will take down pretty much anyone. But it looks innocuous while holding onto it while someone is talking to you that you don't like (as it looks like a black stick about 7-8 in long with foam around it.

Calling 911.....panhandling is illegal in many areas, and you wouldn't be filing a false report if you told them you have a panhandler hassling you, and you wanted officer assistance. A reasonable person would feel threatened by this persons actions, because the panhandler could be crazy, or working himself to robbing/assulting you.....(I would not mind helping a citizen in this long as the situation was described PROPERLY to the dispatcher). (am not LEO, but am heading in that direction). Just because a crime is not being committed (if panhandling is not illegal in your area), does not mean you can't request police assistance so that you do not get hit with an assult (or worse) charge.
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Old January 4, 2005, 06:16 PM   #32
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I agree with Archie because he stated that he would not take his eyes off the guy...that is a key point. I have learned this the hard way. Do not divert your eyes from him in hopes he will go away. Also, what I do might change with the time of day...darkness etc. I would watch his hands in my periphial vision...also for his buddies...if he would not back away from my car when asked politely, I would have a decision to make. Probably use the cell phone and call the police...if possible. But if he reached for something...both of our lives would change forever at that moment for the worse I am afraid.
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Old January 6, 2005, 08:13 AM   #33
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You all are forgetting that you have an advantage here....the convienance store. Just tell the guy in no uncertian terms that you are going inside to call the cops, and go inside, go up to the register and talk to the clerk some, and keep your eye on the guy, and call what, your pride hurts, but a hurt ego is better than a throbbing head, right? Best to try to play by the rules, so if something does happen, and it ends up in court, you can say you exhausted all means that you reasonably had.
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Old March 7, 2005, 05:31 PM   #34
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Call the cops. I once asked my neighbor to turn down his music. The next day, after he smashed his own car with a hammer, he called the cops who questioned me at length about my threats to him. LEO told me "call us we will handle these types of relations with all your neighbors". The neighbor then confessed to hitting his own car about a week later and also told LEO to let me off the hook.


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Old March 7, 2005, 05:43 PM   #35
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Even if i were armed or not armed id probably go back into the store stand in an area were i can see the car and if he staid by my car are folowed me back into the store i would call the cops. After thinking about it if he was following me i probably would not have even made it to the car before i turned around and went back in. with 911 diled into the phone with my finger on the send button.

I rember a couple of years ago aroung x-mass time me and my wife were going to target and i may have stole someons parking spot i did not see that they wanted to turn in so i did. But any way the guy cused at me a bit i said "im sorry budy you just sat there and did not have your blinker on" so he fliped me of and speed of. A little while later we were walking around in the store and he came up behind me yelling like crazy, and i camly said "buddy if you want me to call the cops i will but if you dont want to go to jail for x-mass i would sugest you leav me alone". He looked at me kinda funy and said "youd do that" i showed him i had 911 on my phone and said all i gota go is hit send. Buy that time the manager and some male employes came over saw that the guy was irate and said they were going to excorte him out of the building and if he did not comply they would call the cops as well. I was armed with my Makarov in my coat pocket and no one ever new.
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Old March 7, 2005, 07:09 PM   #36
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something like that actually happened to me about a year ago, was sitting in my truck in a whataburger parking lot eating a late nite burger, i was alone and armed. a street person whom appeared to be not quite right upstairs, approached me on the drivers side and got right up against the door, i had the window up. i told him to go away, he didnt. i repeatedly told him i wasnt going to give him anything and to get away from me. with each time my tone of voice got angrier and angrier, finally i told to to get the [email protected]*k away from me and he finally left. it definately unnerved me and i was tempted to reach for my gun, but he wasnt threatening me, so i didnt. i dont think it would be appropriate in the situation you proposed either.
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Old March 7, 2005, 10:52 PM   #37
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I love stories like these. Hopefully I won't have one to tell but we'll see.
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Old March 8, 2005, 09:28 PM   #38
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Agreed - that is brandishing and is not a wise move.

Situations like this are what convinced me to get pepper spray. I go over to my side of the car (leaving space) and say, "Sir, you followed me to the parking lot and you're now blocking access to my car. Please move or I will be forced to call the police." At this point he's either going to move, do something and get sprayed (I have the spray ready to go), or wait for me to call the cops.

I say this because on my car if you unlock the passenger side you unlock them all - something I'm definitely not doing.

I will say this - I've talked with a few women I know about defending themselves in situations like this. One thing I always stress is BE LOUD!!! If people are around, you have to scream out - somebody help me this guy won't let me into my car! If you make a scene and look like the victim, things are only going to go badly for him.
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Old March 10, 2005, 03:59 AM   #39
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When you see 'em coming your way, ask them for five bucks first
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Old March 10, 2005, 07:00 AM   #40
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Like everything....the devil is in the details...the picture is open to interpetation

But in is a bad idea to let anyone get that close to you. Your options become severely limited.

Handing them an money puts you too close for comfort

At some point I would likely assume the "interview stance" and tell him not to come any closer.

If he aproached after that you would be safe in assuming hostile intent or mental illness. Either would make calling the police justifiable and defendable.
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Old March 10, 2005, 01:09 PM   #41
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Betty and PAX,

Panhandlers are almost invariably lying. Even the gas gauge routine is probably learned from previous experience.

The local news station did a bit on panhandlers in SF, focusing on one man who had lost a leg and claimed to be a veteran. Turns out he scams over $70,000 a year from suckers. He blows the whole lot on drugs each day and then goes back looking for more suckers.

I refuse to donate to any panhandlers as it just encourages them and any comments about their story simply gives them a chance to train for the next time. Any money I hand out will go to organizations that know which people really need it and use it well.

The man described in the original message has obviously been down the path and learned the trick necessary to relieve passive dupes of their cash.
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Old March 14, 2005, 10:04 PM   #42
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I live in the city now, lived in NYC, went to school in Philadelphia. Boy do I have extensive experience with dealing with people asking me for money. First thing, while having your peripheral vision on them the whole time, poiltely say" no, sorry I dont." But dont stop for them, keep walking. Dont ever go digging into your pockets.

It is not your responsibility to pay for people's gas, food, drug problems, etc.

I had one time, while walking to school had a woman squat down and piss on the sidewalk while asking me for money as I walked by. I didnt even acknowledge her existence. I usually do not even answer people asking for money when I am in Philly.

I one time had an escalation in a parking lot with a bum asking me and my friends for money. It was a dark alleyway, and we were walking to my car and almost the exact scenario you described at the beginning of this thread happened. Except this guy was yelling, demanding money and when I told him none of us were giving him money and that he had better leave. He stared me down and started threatening me. I told everyone to get in the car while I stood there with my back to the car between him making sure the girl with me and the other two really puny guys were in the car. Not ever turning my back I got into the car watching him the whole time. I really thought I was going to have to fight this guy. It turned out ok.

The common scam in big cities is for people to act like they are parking lot attendents and they ask you for money to park your car, and you arent sure whether to believe them or not. I never fall for this scam. I always say, "nice try" and I laugh. I say "dont worry the next guy will be stupider than me, you will make your money"
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Old March 15, 2005, 12:03 AM   #43
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I have to say my car load, on the way to a concert, fell for the parking lot attendant trick. (I wasn't driving so I accept no responsibility ) Gave the "parking attendant" 5 bucks and parked. As we're getting out, the real parking attendant came over and told us we got scammed. He said they are out there doing it everytime there is a concert at this place. He was wearing the uniform and everything so we knew he was legit. We gave him the 5 bucks, then tracked down the scammer who was just around the block. We confronted him and told him to give us our money back. He said he already gave it to his manger. RIIIIIIGHT! So we demanded that he take us to his manager to get our money back. As he was trying to ignore us and walk away, the parking attended came around the corner in a van with the parking lot logo on it and cut the guy off from leaving, and told him to give us our money back or he was calling the police. All of a sudden, the guy magically had our 5 bucks back that he had already given to his manager, and wasn't too happy about having to hand it back over.

I'm in Atlanta every day now, and there's no shortage of pan handlers and I have to tell them no on a daily basis. You can definitely call the police if they repeatedly harass you, or if they touch you at all.
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